School leaders often view teacher resistance to change as willful defiance, but there is much more to understand if change agents are willing to peel back the layers of the resistance and dig deeper into the reasons why teachers may struggle to accept new innovations. This action research project is grounded in the notion that an intentional focus on discourse about change through social interaction with teachers who have varying perspectives will increase the probability of enduring transformation in teaching and encourage teachers to continue sharing best practices beyond the silos of their classrooms. Teachers adopting a new literacy curriculum at Harpeth Academy, a private independent school in South City, TN, worked together to discuss reactions to and experiences with new curriculum in a Professional Learning Community (PLC) consisting of three 60- minute jigsaw collaborative learning activities led by the researcher. The objective was to understand how Jigsaw PLCs may affect teachers’ resistance to change and their perceptions of and attitudes toward the new curriculum. The intervention is framed through a social constructivist lens using social capital as a guiding theory. Data was collected through pre and post-interviews, meeting transcripts, and teacher journals. The findings of this study suggest that the social capital created in the Jigsaw PLC affected teachers’ resistance to change and had a positive effect on their attitudes toward and belief in the new curriculum. The time spent in these collaborative learning communities with diverse colleagues addressed concerns about relationships and autonomy, created a sense of shared vulnerability and fate, and allowed teachers to inquire about the merits and benefits of the change.
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